The power of plain text and Git for technical documentation


The Mibex Software team

The tools we use to document our ideas and projects can be as crucial as the content itself. Traditional UI-based documentation platforms like Confluence have served us well, but it's time to discover again the potential of plain text documentation formats like Markdown, AsciiDoc, Mermaid, and PlantUML. But why plain text? It's simple, lightweight, and, most importantly, it goes beyond the limitations of proprietary formats, ensuring your documentation remains accessible and editable.

And the benefits don't stop there, coupled with version control systems like Git, these formats transform documentation into a more collaborative, trackable, and reviewable process. Imagine having a detailed history and revisions of your documents at your fingertips, the ability to collaborate seamlessly through pull requests, and the convenience of code reviews to ensure the quality and accuracy of your technical documentation. This isn't just a step forward; it's a leap into a future where your documentation workflow is as robust as your development process.

Advantages of Plain Text Documentation

Version Control: Leveraging Git for storing documentation ensures comprehensive version tracking, enabling teams to view changes, revert to previous versions, all at no cost.


Efficient Sync: Keeping documentation and code together in a Git repository facilitates efficient simultaneous updates. When new features, such as API endpoints, are added, the corresponding documentation can be updated in tandem with code changes. This approach ensures the documentation remains aligned with the codebase.

Collaboration: Integration with Git facilitates collaboration through pull requests and code reviews, ensuring documentation quality and consistency.

Simplicity: Plain text formats are readable, easy to edit, and don't require proprietary software, making them ideal for developers and technical writers alike.

In this upcoming blog series, we will take a journey through the world of documentation formats, spotlighting plain-text documentation formats like Markdown, AsciiDoc, Mermaid, and PlantUML.

Whether you're a seasoned developer, a technical writer, or someone passionate about effective communication, this series will equip you with the knowledge to elevate your documentation game to new heights.

Exploring the Formats


Overview: Markdown is a lightweight markup language designed for simplicity and readability. It's perfect for creating straightforward documentation, notes, and web content.

Use Case: Ideal for simple documents, README files, and basic guides.


Overview: AsciiDoc offers more structural complexity than Markdown, supporting nested sections, custom attributes, and more.

Use Case: Suited for comprehensive technical manuals, books, and complex documents.


Overview: Mermaid enables the generation of diagrams and charts using text-based syntax, perfect for visual documentation.

Use Case: Use Mermaid for flowcharts, sequence diagrams, and other visualizations within documentation.


Overview: PlantUML is similar to Mermaid but supports a wider range of diagrams and more detailed customization

Use Case: Best for detailed technical diagrams, including UML diagrams, architecture diagrams, and more.


Using Markdown, AsciiDoc, Mermaid, and PlantUML in tandem enables the creation of rich, versatile technical documentation. Markdown and AsciiDoc lay the textual foundation, while Mermaid and PlantUML add visual clarity.

By leveraging Include Bitbucket for Confluence, teams can integrate these files from Git directly into Confluence, rendering them easily and benefiting from the best of both worlds: the robustness of plain text documentation and the collaborative features of Confluence. And with the app, you can even search for text in your documentation stored in Git from within Confluence.


We will learn more about these formats and other tools and methods that can make the documentation process better in the next blog series.